Bulb Archived: Hedges ATLAS 2015-2018: Gutiérrez (Year 1, 2015-2016)

ATLAS Survey Y1

School Name: Hedges Fine & Performing Arts School

Teacher Name: José L. Gutiérrez

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Team recording a news report with a green screen background.

Section I: Arts Integration – Documentation.  Please upload documentation from your project.  Please include a variety of media forms for your documentation.  

 1. Documentation should not only provide a narrative, or story, of your project, but should also provide evidence of students’ engagement in the unit inquiry.

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students watching each other practice presenting news reports and giving each other feedback.
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Students preparing their information for their presentation about natural disasters.
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Students hold laptop as teleprompter to avoid having note cards during news report presentation. 
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Students wore nice outfits for final news report presentation
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Students would get into character before performing and would practice speaking “professional english”
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Students of all ability levels were working together trying out the different roles on the production team. 

2. Through your documentation, please provide student artifacts that depict the range of work completed.  For example, what were the various ways in which students responded to various aspects of the project?

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Screen Shot of google classroom assignment and student posts in the incorrect place. Students were instructed to post their completed assignment and images in another part of google classroom. At least they completed the important part of the assignment with more time to practice they will learn to navigate the google classroom app. 
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Student completed assignment to find 5 images from their disaster and answered the questions. Whats the name of Disaster? What kind of Disaster was it? When did it happen? Where did it happen? What was the impact  (3 effects) of the disasters?
Student presents information and describes the images using vocabulary from the previous unit and wearing a nice shirt like a trying to look like a professional news reporter. Editing in the images to replace the green screen was the next step in the project.
Student uses teleprompter to read what she is going to say while using expressive gestures to point her audience to the images she will be editing in later on in the project. 

Section I: Arts Integration – Inquiry

3. What is your Inquiry Question for your ATLAS curriculum unit?  What big ideas does this inquiry question address, and why do you think the question successfully addresses these?

My inquiry question was How do you produce a news report?

BIG IDEAS:   Careers in the Arts  / Art and Technology / ART is all around us

I think my inquiry question successfully addresses the BIG IDEAS because students learned how to use technology to create a news report. They learned how to use basic tools that they can easily access like an ipod or phone, a cheap tripod, and google. Through this process they were exposed to the different roles that need to be filled to make a production like a news report. And in the process they were exposed different careers such as news reporter,  Photo Journalism and video production.

4. How did student research help them to engage more deeply with the unit inquiry question? Explain how your students conducted research for their ATLAS project, and how that research opened up avenues for further inquiry.

The main focus of the project was research. In order to produce a news report you have to have something to report about. So the students had to select a type of Natural Disaster (tornado, hurricane, mud slide, wild fire, tsunami) and then find an event in the past that they would find images and information that they would share in their new report presentation. 

5. Describe how the unit inquiry opens up avenues for interdisciplinary connections between the arts and academic content. How did arts processes and/or research practices facilitate students’ understanding of the academic topics addressed in the inquiry question?

This project was an extension of an Natural Disaster Unit that the 4th grade students were learning about in their science and social studies classes. In Science they learned about the different types of weather related disasters and in social studies they learned about the impact and effects of disasters like Hurricane Sandy and Katrina. In my class they had to choose a type of natural disaster and research a past event (tornado, hurricane, wildfire, tsunami…) that they were going to report on. The project directly connected to what they learned in class and through this art project they had more time to focus on the type of disaster they found most interesting. They searched for images and facts from different websites about the specific disaster event they choose and organized their information to make a video recorded news report. 

6. How did the curriculum evolve based on the unit inquiry process? 

The curriculum evolved because I had to stop and teach the students how to use the technology they were needed for the project. Everything the students were using was new to them and it required a lot of steps to achieve each class sessions goal. So the I had to extend the time the students had to accomplish each task because I had to allow time for them to get familiar with the equipment they were using. I had to teach them how to join the google classroom and how to find assignments I created that would guide them through the researching stage of the project. I had to teach them how to download images and save them to a file on their computer to use as backgrounds that would replace the green screen for their news reports. They had to learn how to organize the information they were going to say in front of the camera. And they had to learn how to use the ipod and tripod to frame their shot for video recording. Finally, they had to watch themselves and try to improve the way they performed in front of the camera. So I had to add more inquiry questions like:

1. How do you use a search engine on the internet to find a good quality high resolution image and save it on the computer?

2. How do use google search to find resources for researching historical events, like natural disasters?

Section I: Arts Integration – Create Works

7. How did students self-direct while creating their artistic work during the ATLAS project? Please provide any examples for the ways in which students made their own aesthetic choices and direction for creating their artwork. Examples might include but are not limited to: how did students make choices about the use of materials, how did they decide what they wanted to communicate, how did they make decisions about how to present work?

The students were given the chance to select they type of disaster and what disaster in the past they were going to research. They had to think about how they wanted to share the information and what images they wanted to use in their back grounds. They even had a chance to bring a costume to make the news report more personal for the students. To guide them as to how we watched different reporters in class and talked about how they capture the audience attention. 

8. Please explain what opportunities the students had to reflect on their experiences and react to the work of their peers.

Students reflected on their experiences and reacted to the work of their peers when we watched the students videos and discussed the information that was presented, it did not take long before the students figured out that they needed more information if they wanted to sound like they knew what they were talking about. They found out that their peers were not going to let them make up the information and that they were going to be challenged by me if their facts did not accurate or incorrect. When they watched themselves they also observed how they looked on camera, they knew who was good and who was acting silly of just goofing around. Because of this they started taking the project more seriously and made more of an effort to use body gestures to direct the audience to the images they were going to edit in later. Some students referenced the images in their report, which shows they thinking about how the different parts of the project were going to come together at the end. 

9. How did the students’ artifacts from various stages of the ATLAS Unit impact your teaching practice? Please provide artifacts that exemplify your points. What did you learn about your teaching practice from looking at these artifacts?

I learned that I have to develop projects that are shorter and not as ambitious. I need to be more realistic with the goals I set for my students and acknowledge what i am truly able to achieve in a limited amount of time. I also need to demand more from the teachers I collaborate with and use learning from the regular classroom as the content for my projects. I do not need to have students generate new information instead I need for the collaborating teachers to have the students do research in class bring it to class so I build on what they learned. 

10. Describe how the students’ work was shared in the school or publicly. Why was this an important part of this unit?

The Project was never finished due to the end of the school year and not enough time to edit the videos so we never got to exhibit the project.

Section I: Arts Integration – Collaboration

11. How did students collaborate at different stages of the project? Examples might include but are not limited to: did the students research together, did they create together, did they critique together, did they present together?

Collaboration was a big part of this project they students to collaborate on choosing a type of natural disaster and then find different events that they were going to present about. They helped each other when they were using the computers. and then they had to record everyone’s news report on their team. They also watched what they recorded and gave each other feedback on their news report presentations.  

12. In what ways did you collaborate with the students for this unit. How did the students impact the way in which the curriculum was implemented? For example, how did students help you plan, develop, and/or implement the curriculum?

The students did not participate in the planning or design of the unit, but they taught me a lot about how to manage a project like this that has many different steps and uses a lot of technology tools.

13. How did you collaborate with other teachers in your school to plan and/or implement the unit?

I meet with the 4th grade teachers 2 times to discuss the unit. However they were not available to provide me with much of what the students were going to produce in class they were excited about the students having an opportunity to delve deeper on a topic they were covering in their classroom. But we did not talk much about the logistics of accomplishing the project. We had separate goals for the project and they were approving of my plans. I did not anticipate all of the learning the students were going to have to do in regards to using the computers and doing research in my class. One of the collaborating teachers was out on medical leave and is why they were not very supportive on this project.

Section II: Technology Integration

14. What was your process for selecting this form of digital media technology? Why did you think this form of digital media technology would be ideal for student learning?

I wanted the students to have the opportunity to make videos in my class. I wanted to provide them with an art form that would get them to perform and become aware of their presence on the camera when presenting information on a topic. So using the ipods to record was clear to me because most of the students are familiar with because it is just like video recording on a cell phone. I also wanted to use some of the tools provided by google to facilitate keeping track of students progress on the project. Finally I also had to teach students how to do research and how to use apps in their google account. 

15. How did students use digital media technology to direct their own learning? Provide artifacts to show evidence of how students used the technology to direct their own learning. Examples might include but are not limited to: making choices about technologies to use, using technology to facilitate experimentation, using technology as a research tool, to express themselves artistically, and/or to make meaning of their experiences.

Student choice was not present in this part of the project because students were just gathering the information images and their news report videos they were going to take into the editing stage to finally have choice in the final presentation of their news reports, however we never made it to that stage of the project.  

16. How did you use technology to enhance the learning environment for both you as a teacher and for the students?

I had to transform my classroom and hallway into a green screen recording studio. We had to had parts of the room for working on the computers and other areas where students practiced and areas where the students recorded. It was a mad house! Students were all over the pace and it was difficult to deal with students with behavior issues. I also had to be in 2 places at the same time to monitor the students as they worked. And I also had to provide one on one support to students that needed assistance with research or the video recording equipment. The students were really into the project and the majority were engaged in the learning that it offered. But the environment was not adequate because i needed more support in the classroom to actually complete the project as planned. 

17. In what ways do your chosen technology resources align with your goals and outcomes for student learning? Looking back at the unit, how did the technology meet, not meet or exceed your expectations for facilitating student outcomes.

The technology resources were the central focus of the project, every goal and outcome involved the use of technology and they meet my expectations for facilitating the student outcomes. To do the research (find images and information) on the web students had to follow links in the google classroom page to get started and focus their research on a specific natural disaster event. The students then had to use an ipod to video record their news report. other technology tools we used was the google classroom was great for sharing links with students and keeping track of their progress on the project and the information they found for their natural disaster. 

18. How did the use of technology contribute to students’ application of higher order thinking skills? Examples of student higher order thinking skills include metacognition, self-reflection, analysis, and application of knowledge or skills.

Self-reflection happened when the students recorded themselves presenting the information they researched. They watched what they recorded and also watched and analyzed each other as they presented and recorded each other. This gave them an opportunity to think about the information they found and assess how they each presented, and what they needed to improve upon. After the 1st take of recordings some of the students did more research. Others changed how they talked or how they moved on camera, and some even brought nice clothes to wear for their final takes. The use of technology was the focus of this project The students applied all of the technology skills they learned throughout the project, from researching a natural disaster on the web to using an i-pod for video recording. It was also interesting how they interacted as a crew as they filmed each others news report, someone would set up the camera and frame the shot another student would hold the computer, that they used as a teleprompter, and the last one would try to keep the area clear and quiet like a producer or director. Everyone played a role in the production.   

19. How did the use of technology drive student creative artistic expression? Please provide student artifacts that exemplify how technology supported their artistic expression.

Students were driven to express themselves creatively by video recording themselves and seeing how they looked on screen. Some of them brought in outfits and got into performing their news reports. They did multiple takes and tried to report their research in a creative and expressive manner, some used jokes or hand gestures to make their performance more interesting. 

20. How did the integration of digital media technology impact your teaching practice?

The integration of digital media technology impacted my teaching practice in many ways. Mainly because I not only had to teach the students how to use the media equipment and tools, like the i-pods and tripods for video recording but I also had to teach them how to use the computers for researching and finding information and images they were going to use to complete the project. I even had to show them how to save and organize their files on their google drives and how to organize the information to prepare a news report. I constantly felt that I did not have enough time for my students to accomplish the goal each week, especially in the beginning of the project because I had to teach the students research skills and basic computer skills. I found that I did not provide them much time to practice the actual art making and we did not get to complete the final most important stage of the project. Where students would focus on the visual art side of the project where they were going to collage images and consider how to incorporate text, transitions and other special effects.

The main issue was that students did not have access to the computers outside of class, and the collaborating teachers did not provide them time to complete their research for art class during their class time because of the material they were required to cover themselves. The art project dragged on even after they were done learning about natural disasters in their regular class. Luckily the majority of the students were into the project because of the technology we were using and they wanted to learn how to use the video recording equipment.

Besides teaching outside of the art standards it was a great opportunity to teach my students how to use a search engine on the web. I taught them how to pose questions in a web search so they could focus their found images and information on the specific Natural Disaster they were reporting on. I had to meet the students where they were in terms of using technology to do research and let them practice skills they will use and develop over the course their education. The cost of this was that we ran out of time and did not complete the project as I had planned. We never got to the actual production of their news reports where we were going to learn to edit video and add special effects. They only got to record themselves and watch what they recorded. a few students got as far as uploading their recording to the computer and saving it to their drive.